Russian Seizure of Western Farmlands Raises Concerns in Italy

Written by Henrik Rothen

Apr.14 - 2024 7:57 PM CET

Photo: Asatur Yesayants /
Photo: Asatur Yesayants /
Is this the start of a global agricultural showdown?

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Russian President Vladimir Putin has once again sparked concern in the West with a recent decree that has significantly altered the control of agricultural lands in Russia.

According to Italian journalist Giorgia Bonamoneta and a report by the Money publication, the Russian government has temporarily seized assets from several Western companies, marking another tense chapter in Russia-West relations.

A Strategic Maneuver Amidst Sanctions

The decree specifically targets AgroTerra, a company controlling about 265,000 hectares of agricultural land across regions like Kursk, Lipetsk, Penza, Ryazan, Tambov, and Tula.

AgroTerra, although operational in Russia, is owned by entities based in the Netherlands.

This move is seen as part of a broader Russian strategy to retaliate against Western sanctions and threats to confiscate frozen assets of the Russian Central Bank.

Western Fears and Potential Global Impact

The reaction in the West has been one of alarm, with concerns that this action might not be an isolated incident.

Observers worry about the potential repercussions beyond Russia's borders.

There are fears that this could threaten the global supply chain of agricultural products and further destabilize international relations.

Giorgia Bonamoneta points out that Western companies have already faced significant financial losses due to their withdrawal from the Russian market.

Those that remain are at risk of being impacted by Putin's decree, which allows the Russian government to take control of assets from companies tied to countries deemed unfriendly.

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